This is going to sound bad and I hope you read to the end and don’t just turn off the computer and start praying for me. (Even though I always welcome more prayer.)
But, in all honesty, I hope Jesus doesn’t come back too quickly.
Before you start asking God to “smiteth Tim where he be”, hear me out.
As a parent, I have come to realize how fast time flies through this one life we have on earth. Each day I see Natalie growing and changing and there is no way for me to stop it.
I want to punch Father Time square in the face.
Sorry. I know this is a little harsh and probably more violent than you are used to during the holiday season (except for all the Black Friday shoppers – hiyoooo).
But seriously, my daughter turns three this week and it’s an all-too-important reminder that time slows for no man.
When I was a teenager I used to hope Jesus would at least wait until I got married to come back, because…well…you know…fun married people stuff.
After I got married, I would ask God to give me a little time to travel and see some of the amazing places on this earth before rapturing me into glory and viewing the pure awesomeness that will be heaven.
After visiting multiple countries and some of the most beautiful places on earth, I began to renegotiate with God and ask Him to allow me to experience fatherhood. And now that He has faithfully given me yet another of my requests, I see a never-ending line of others coming to take its place.
I want to see Natalie ride a bike, graduate, earn a PhD, win a Nobel Prize (for dunking, of course) and eventually – at the ripe age of 35 – start dating and get married.
But see, the cycle will never end. When I am old and past the point where I can think of nothing else I want to experience for myself, I will be asking God for all I received to be experienced by my child, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.
Does this make me a bad Christian? Sometimes I wonder.
I know the world is full of sin, which leads to hunger, abuse, wars, hate, deceit, greed, lust and the list goes on. I know I am not supposed to desire this life but long for a life to come with my Creator.
But, I struggle to focus on all the chaos that sin creates when, as believers, we get to experience God’s daily provision for us in the midst of it all and in a way that can only be felt and explained through faith.
This makes it hard for me to agree with believers who say they are “ready for Christ to return”. I can’t say that I don’t understand them to some degree. I mean, the return of our Savior would be a great away to avoid a lot of the pain we endure throughout our lives.
However, in the darkness and trials of this world, God’s grace shines brightest. We not only get to exist in this hope, but we get to share it and experience it with others.
So, it’s not that I don’t eagerly anticipate the day I will finally come face to face with my creator. (I actually have some really important questions for Him…like, why did my Memory Foam bed “remember” a much heavier man and basically create a hole for me to sleep in at night?)
It’s that I can’t bring myself to wish Jesus’ coming before the entire population of the world has had an opportunity to experience Him the way I have. Not as any sort of religious “feeling” during a good worship song or lengthy prayer session, but as the true guide to, helper of and provider for everything truly meaningful in my life.
It’s an amazing journey, and one I hope I continue to embrace through good times and bad.
Now, you can pray for me.